High overcast this early Monday morning on California’s north coast with no stars and a chilly wind.
The last few days have been near-gorgeous, but we’re expecting a fairly-good size storm for Tuesday or Wednesday and sunshine might be gone awhile.
Oil and water don’t mix, and so should it be with climate change as the earth continues to warm due to us humans burning fossil fuels like there’s no tomorrow.
(Illustration found here).
Yesterday, an estimated 35,000 people turned out for a rallyÂ at the National Mall in DC to protest the Keystone XL pipeline, which will carry mega-dirty tar sands oil from Alberta, Canada, to refineries on the Gulf of Mexico.
Protestors waved posters and chanted: “Hey, Obama. We don’t want no climate drama.”
Tar sands oil is three times more toxicÂ for our air than the regular shit: Tar sands consist of heavy crude oil mixed with sand, clay and bitumen. Extraction entails burning natural gas to generate enough heat and steam to melt the oil out of the sand. As many as five barrels of water are needed to produce a single barrel of oil.
Why can’t we just leave that ugly shit in the ground — there’s enough things already in place that will kill our planet several times over.
Like me for instance — Yesterday, I did my part in ruining the earth by visiting my local Union 76 and putting another $20 worth of gas in my old Jeep, the pump price now at $4.29 a gallon for regular — a jump of 30 cents since the last time 10 days ago.
Statewide we’re getting to be about around the norm, though still high — the average price in LA CountyÂ is a penny less at $4.28 a gallon ($3.99 same time a year ago), but apparently there’s some spots there where it’s above the $5 mark: â€œItâ€™s way too much,â€ said one motorist filling up his tank at a Miracle Mile gas station charging $5.09 for a gallon of regular gas. â€œItâ€™s unbelievable.â€
The average statewide is $4.06 a gallon for regular.
Nationwide last week, the averageÂ was about $3.67 a gallon — up and down depending where you live — an increase of 12 cents in the past week and 42 cents in the past month.
And all this while reportedly there’s more oil being produced.
According to the EIA, there was a 2.3 percent increase in world petroleum production for 2012 — 88.8 million barrels a day — 2 million more a day than in 2010.
However, there’s a snap/catch to the deal — one: China likely consumed nearly half of the global 2 mb/d increase. The EIA reports that China increased its petroleum consumption by almost 500,000 b/d in 2011, and preliminary estimates are that China added another 420,000 barrels to its daily consumption in 2012.
And second, the emergence of NGLs — natural gas liquids — of which more than a fourth of the EIA’s reported 2 mb/d was these NGLs. Ethane nor propane is used to make gasoline.
James Hamilton at oilprice.comÂ (also source of above info):
It’s obvious from the above price charts that it makes no economic sense to add gallons of ethane or propane to gallons of crude oil to try to summarize global oil supply.
But growth of natural gas liquids has been a key factor in the reported increases in “world oil supply” over the last few years and is also a key component of recent optimistic assessments of future oil production by Leonardo Maugeri and the IEA.
There is no question that the boom in production of natural gas liquids is providing a great benefit to industrial users of ethylene.
But if you’re waiting for it to lower the price you pay for gasoline at the pump, you may have to wait a while longer.
And even US oil consumption is down — not prices, though. Gail Tverberg has a must-read, though, much-detailed analysis on how the US has consumed less oil here.
InfluencedÂ by just about everything, even a tepid reportÂ on U.S. industrial production made it soÂ oil prices skiddedÂ on Friday: In New York benchmark crude for March fell $1.45 to finish at $95.86 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price many varieties of foreign oil, fell 34 cents to end at $117.66 per barrel in London.
More oil, but prices are still high.
From Oil Price:
Technological developments have made it possible to tap into tight oil, but these are not the same kinds of technological developments that have given us ever more powerful computers and cellphones at ever declining prices.
Oil production technology is giving us ever more expensive oil with ever diminishing returns for the ever increasing effort that needs to be invested.
According to the statistics presented by J. David Hughes at the [American Geophysical Union] session, we are now drilling 25,000 wells per year just to bring production back to the levels of the year 2000, when we were drilling only 5,000 wells per year.
We have to keep increasing drilling just to keep production steady, and the faster you drill in a particular area the faster production peaks and drops off.
That future is an economy pouring ever greater amounts of energy and money into efforts â€œto extract the last drop of profit through faster depletion of a resource thatâ€™s guaranteed to run out.â€
So the structural economics of continuing to pursue oil are shaky, even if further industry profit is possible.
It remains the case that the best way to avoid high gas prices and supply shocks — not to mention avoiding catastrophic damage to the global climate — is to move away from oil as an energy source.
Odd, this black gold and its complete strangle-hold on humanity — both the source of civilization and its demise.
During Sunday’s protest rally in DC, there were a lot of posters: Others held placards saying, “Read my lips: no new carbons,” and “We’re in a climate hole: stop digging.” Another, referring to a method for extracting natural gas, said: “Don’t be frackin’ crazy.”
No drama, pleze Mister Obama.